The 212 Heroes is the new masculine fragrance released by Carolina Herrera.
With the launch of the 212 Heroes Eau de Toilette, the brand produced an exciting campaign surrounding the perfume, which celebrates the concept of 212 Heroes, which are Youth, Heroes and Skateboarding, as well as New York and of course The Party Spirit!
August Man Malaysia gets an exclusive interview with Carolina A. Herrera, the brand’s beauty creative director, to find out more about the 212 Heroes.
Carolina Herrera has given a modern twist to an emblematic olfactory family. With 212 Heroes, a new type of Fougère –the backbone of masculine perfumery – that we could call Fougère Fruity Woody, is born. The scent is built around an unlikely couple. “The Geranium Oil, elegant and complex, blends with Pear Elixir, refreshing and sparkling. This irreverent duo injects energy and optimism in the fragrance,” says the team of perfumers behind the concoction.
In which way does 212 Heroes revamp Fougères?
Growing up, I have always been surrounded by men wearing Fougères. For me, this olfactory family is the backbone of masculine perfumery. There is nothing more masculine than a Fougère! With 212 Heroes, I wanted to break this tradition and make Fougères genderless. 212 Heroes is considered a masculine fragrance. But we have played around so much with its formula, that women can wear it too. I also wear it. When 212 for women was released in 1997 and a man told me he was wearing it, I felt so happy! I have always believed perfumes are a personal choice and get excited when they break gender boundaries. This launch is all about breaking the rules: we have introduced a big dose of Geranium and fresh ingredients, like Pear and Ginger. The result is a more inclusive fragrance that creates a new olfactory category: Fougères Fruity Woody.
What is the secret of its formula?
We wanted to play around with notes that capture the feeling of practicing sports outdoors. Training outside is a very different experience to training in the gym. Your skin smells different if you exercise outdoors. Pear Elixir, Ginger, Lemon Haze Cannabis and the Ink and Skin capture that emotion. They are vibrant. Many ingredients have been specifically formulated for 212 Heroes. They are exclusive, like a couture dress. That is what authenticity means: always going one step further and offering something truly unique, which does not currently exist.
The flacon is just as innovative as the formula: could you tell us about the skateboard-shaped bottle?
A perfume is more than an invisible accessory—it’s a design piece! It has to be seductive and striking. We wanted to challenge ourselves. It wasn’t easy—adapting a fragrance to the shape of a skateboard is very complicated. The stability, the internal pressure system, the material… everything counts. It took us three years and hundreds of tests to perfect the bottle.
In a hyperconnected world, partying gains momentum. It is an inspiring catalyst and the perfect excuse to interact, share and enjoy. Social gatherings have evolved; partying is not confined to the nightclubs and houses these days. Communal connection also happens outside the exclusivity of the club and the intimacy of the house: the street is the new club.
Thus fits in skateboarding, which was born in California around the 1950s as the urban version of surfing, quickly developed into the global cultural phenomenon and way of life it is today. Its possibilities are boundless. And the influence of the Do-it-Yourself ethos and its iconic aesthetics is ongoing.
The faces of 212 Heroes convey this message: the new 212 gang is composed of 14 ambassadors with different backgrounds, ages and genders.
Could you share some thoughts on the 14 ambassadors?
Of course. KJ Apa, famous for his role in the series Riverdale, could live like a big star, but he prefers to keep it real, which is why he is always carrying his guitar around. Taylor Hill, one of the most well-known models and part of the 212 gang since 2017, has opened up about her insecurities and has empowered millions of people. The same is true when we talk about Jorge López (Elite). The activist Indya Moore, who found success in the FX series Pose, is raising awareness and changing the world. Sita Abellán is unique: A DJ, designer and stylist, she is redefining what it means to be an influencer. Ed Munro is a genuine performer: he has triumphed in the world of dance without sacrificing his personality. Models Tess MacMillan and Charlotte Rose have defied convention too, with a more inclusive vision of beauty. Aaron Fotheringham is one of the few athletes of Wheelchair Motocross International. He has helped us to see that every obstacle contains within it the seeds of opportunity. The rest of the gang is equally as unique. Rachelle Vinberg has united female skaters and inspired women to start skateboarding. Lil Dre, skater and rapper, Ko Hyo Joo, dancer and skater, and the actor Austin Amelio all share the same inclusive mentality.
The campaign is fantastic: it was shot in LA by the renowned British photographer and director Charlotte Wales. I heard that despite the intense work, you had a lot of fun. Could you tell us more about the experience?
Shooting in LA is always exciting, but if you are surrounded by an enthusiastic and inspiring team, work becomes a source of enjoyment. As I said before, there was real chemistry behind the scenes. True relationships were forged: the ambassadors laughed, joked, danced… we all had a great time.
Why is skateboarding the focus of the 212 Heroes story and campaign?
The evolution of skateboarding is a metaphor for its boundless possibilities. It went from being a ‘fringe sport’ to a global phenomenon. Plus, skateboarding has no age, gender or country: you can find skateboarders of different ages, cultures and genders. Skateboarding will never age because it has a youthful spirit. Skate has been celebrated in cinema, music, comic books, painting, photography and literature.